Request for Suo Moto action against vigilantism, incitement to violence

Love Life supports this initiative by the Citizens for Democracy to encourage the Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) to take sou moto action against religious extremists who are inciting violence against the innocent people of Pakistan for defending human rights.

It is vital to support all such endeavors for the safety of Pakistani citizens. Please endorse it here:

January 9, 2011
By Citizens for Democracy

Following is the text for an open request, prepared by a lawyer, addressed to the CJP for suo moto action against the qari of the Mohabat Khan mosque Peshawar who had offered a reward for the murder of Aasia Noreen if the Lahore High Court acquits her. The onus is on the CJP to take notice of both such brazen violation of law and of the criminal intent of the qari. It may also be used to file a legal petition, and would also be a public display of where we stand and what we expect of the Supreme Court when law is violated, verbally or through actually committing murder – whether in the name of ‘national interest’, personal interest or in the name of religion. Please endorse the request in the comments section if you agree.


The Honourable Chief Justice of Pakistan,

We, concerned citizens wish to draw your Lordship’s attention to an urgent matter of extreme public importance and seek your Lordship’s indulgence in exercising Suo Motu jurisdiction to prevent violations of the most fundamental of personal rights and performance of the guarantee that “no person shall be deprived of life or liberty save in accordance with the law” as enshrined in Article 9 of the Constitution of Pakistan.

Annexed with this petition are newspaper clippings and news items published in Urdu daily “…………” and on the internet disclosing that one Yousuf Qureshi, Imam of the Mohabbat Khan Mosque in Peshawar, has announced an award for the murder of Aasia Bibi, a Christian mother of five sentenced to death after being charged and tried for blasphemy. The announcement and its publication amount to offences under the Pakistan Penal Code which appear in the current scenario, where individual notions of what constitutes blasphemy seem to override the law, and remain, for reasons stated below, beyond the law enforcement agencies’ capacity to take cognizance of such serious offences.

The annexed reports are all prior in time to the assassination of Salman Taseer, the former Governor of Punjab, who also appears, subject to the outcome of investigations by the relevant authorities, to have been a victim of one man, possibly incited by similar announcements and denunciations, committing a pre-meditated murder and justifying it on the basis of his belief that the assassinated former Governor had blasphemed by publicly voicing his opinion on a law.

The ongoing debate concerning the matter of Aasia Bibi and the assassination of the former Governor poses an imminent threat much bigger in scale compared to what has been referred to as “honour killings”. Given the religious sensitivities surrounding the issue at the heart of the matter, this matter can be reasonably taken up only by the esteemed Supreme Court of Pakistan to finally and conclusively determine the criminality in inciting murder in the midst of hysteria around allegations of blasphemy.

The signatories to this Petition have been alarmed by the contents of the annexed news reports and believe the same to be brazen declarations of criminal intent and commission of a crime but lack the means of setting the course of law in motion on account of lack of personal knowledge ad having come to know of the statements through publications in the media. Even otherwise, we believe that the matters calls for nothing less than direct intervention by your Lordship given the inability of the investigating authorities to investigate the matter without fear of personal security of the investigating officers.

The signatories to this Petition pray that your Lordship may initiate proceedings in the matter Suo Motu and protect the country from misguided individuals founding another criminal institution of Customary Killing in violation of Article 9 and 10-A of the Constitution of Pakistan.